New office supplies catalogue launched

The Crown Marketplace programme, which is set to revolutionise public procurement, has unveiled its second online catalogue.

Office Supplies has now joined Technology Products 2 as part of the programme’s test phase, which aims to offer a simplified online buying experience for the wider public sector.

Colourful Stationery

The catalogue gives buyers access to more than 10,000 different office supply items – much like online retailers such as Amazon – and uses the programme’s ‘smart basket’ technology to ensure the lowest cost for customers, including delivery. The programme’s purchasing platform is currently in the pilot phase and users are being engaged in its development.

Matt Denham, Senior Responsible Owner for the programme, said: “We are using the latest technology to match buyers with sellers and give customers the very best value for money.

“We have been delighted by the positive response from customers to the first catalogue for technology products so far. We have had lots of feedback from customers about the platform, and we welcome continued feedback as we continue to test and learn.”

If you have any feedback to share, please email CMpFeedback@crowncommercial.gov.uk

If you are interested in buying through the platform visit the website to register or to find out more get in touch.

The CCS Showcase continues its successful tour of the UK at Procurex South

Following the huge success of our first CCS Showcase at Procurex North last month, which featured our buyer and supplier advice bar, training workshops and feedback wall, this week we attended Procurex South ready to do it all again.

CCS Showcase Stand

Our drop-in advice bar featured a different zone on either side – one for buyers and one for suppliers. This provided two distinct spaces for our customer team to help customers, and colleagues from our policy team to engage with suppliers. I wanted to say a big thank you to everyone who visited us over the course of the day, it was great to chat with such a varied selection of people and organisations and discuss your diverse procurement needs.

Our new feedback wall gave us the opportunity to gather thoughts from our customers and suppliers on what they feel we’re doing right and what we need to change or improve upon. We will be reviewing all feedback from the walls and using it to help us make further improvements going forward.

CCS Peter Lawson Keynote

To kick off the day, we sat down for a speech from our Strategic Category Director Peter Lawson in the keynote arena, where he discussed the current state of public sector procurement and the ways we are trying to make it easier to do business with CCS. Key topics included the much anticipated Crown Marketplace project to create an easy to use online buying portal, centralising our customer help desk and the importance of saving our customers both time and money. To find out more, view the full keynote presentation.

CCS Training Zone Procurex

In the afternoon, we ran 5 different sessions in our dedicated training zone. Topics included:

When to use and how to choose a framework or other sourcing route
Procurement 101
How to write and manage a category strategy
Engaging your stakeholders before, during and after your procurement
Using social value criteria to practically run and evaluate your procurement

To view the speakers’ presentations, simply click on the links above.

The sessions were very popular with visitors – so much so that they were all standing room only! David Gigg from our Disputes and Policy Implementation team took the opportunity to discuss our new policy on social value in the final session, which I know is a huge development, and the panel discussion and questions from the audience afterwards were very interesting.

I’d like to thank everyone who visited our CCS Showcase, I hope you enjoyed the day and took away some valuable insights. If you have any questions or would like to enquire about working with us, please get in touch.

We showed charities how to make savings at the NCVO annual conference

We know that for all charities tight control over budgets and resources is a key priority, so at this year’s NCVO annual conference we demonstrated how our customer team at CCS could help charities to make savings.

NCVO Conference

Visitors to our stand discovered how CCS could help them to save time and money when buying everyday business goods and services, so that charities can focus on, well, charity.

From learning how they could use our frameworks, to discovering our online catalogue for technology products, charities found out a wealth of information about the services that we offer the voluntary sector.

You can use our commercial solutions free of charge, and we’re committed to helping you achieve maximum value by leveraging our commercial expertise and national buying power.

The areas we work in cover:

  • technology: cloud & digital solutions, network services, software and technology products & services
  • corporate solutions: travel, fleet, office solutions, print, post & storage, marketing & communications, financial services and contact centres
  • buildings: facilities management, maintenance & repair and utilities & fuel
  • people: temporary staff, outsourced services and advisory services

If you’re a charity and missed out on seeing us at this year’s NCVO annual conference, fear not – you can find out more about us in our brochure.

Or, if you want to find out more about how we can help you, ask a question, leave feedback or sign up to our newsletter please get in touch.